UINFC2 - Engaging Users in Preventing and Fighting Cyber Crime
UINFC2 - Engaging Users in Preventing and Fighting Cyber Crime is a project co-funded by the Directorate-General Home Affairs and Justice with partners the Center for Security Studies (KEMEA), the University of Piraeus, the Cyprus Neuroscience and Technology Institute, ADITESS, Mezza Group and CENTRIC
The Council of Europe designates as a top priority for the forthcoming years the prevention and fighting of cybercrime. Currently, cybercrime presents an enormous increase in the number of incidents occur, the ferocity of the underlying attacks, as well as the targets (i.e., persons, services, entities) and the impact (both societal and economic) of the carried malicious actions. This mainly happens for three reasons: a) the growth of the Internet users, especially, young people and children using personal computers, smartphones or tablets; b) the penetration of the Internet services to our day life; and c) the latest technological achievements in ICT that enable many criminal actions to move to the Internet world, eliminating the possibility to leave evidences, as well as the emerging of new serious threats such as, online sexual solicitation of children, distribution/possession of child abusive material, etc. Children’s exploitation creates a massive number of evidences (sometimes hidden or distributed), which overcome the borders of a country and cannot be processed by traditional human-centric tools and methods. Moreover, such threats affect on the most sensitive part of the society, putting in danger our future. To effectively counteract these serious threats, the following initiatives should be materialized. First, devise intelligent and automated tools that may track and process, at EU or International level, illegal content exists in the network, as well as related data reside at the hot lines’ databases or maintained by LEA in order to be, timely, correlated and classified, extracting the useful information required by LEA to combat it and its sources. Second, harmonization and speed up of the procedures, followed against crimes on children’s, and cooperation among the involved stakeholders in order to identify and combat as many cases as possible, using properly their resources and enhancing their effectiveness.
The main objectives of the project are:
- To build and strengthen the capabilities of LEAs, asoociations, organizations and EU bodies, including the Global Alliance against Child Sexual Abuse in order to strategically combat children’s online crimes.
- To assist LEAs in automatically detecting online illegal data from social media, blogs, underground communities etc., and determine investigation priorities.
- To introduce the latest achievements of ICT in data mining, intelligence, correlation, classification, automatic monitoring, decision making, report producing, etc., in combating crimes.
- To facilitate the formal exchange of compiled information produced by the intelligent analysis of online contents, amongst all stakeholders in order to enhance collaboration and effectively counteract crimes.
- To strengthen the mission of the recently founded European Cybercrime Center, by producing strategic reports on crimes’ trends and emerging threats in order to provide comparable statistics among Member States.
The target groups of UINFC2 project, which are expected to participate actively in the foreseen activities are:
a) National Law Enforcement Agents (54: 2 from each Member State (MS)).
b) Members of National Hotlines (27: 1 from each MS).
c) Members of Safer Internet Programme and Inhope Network (54: 2 from each MS).
d) Member’s from Europol and EC3 (14: 10 NL, 4 BE ).
e) Researchers from cyber security & cybercrime related institutions (15: 4 UK, 6 GR, 5 CY).
On the other hand the beneficiaries of the UINFC2 project are:
i) National hotlines receiving information from the public relating to illegal content on the Internet, on-line child pornography and child exploitation.
ii) National Alert Platforms relating to fighting illegal content, tackling harmful conduct online and promoting a safer online environment.
iii) Non-governmental organizations for child protection on the Internet.
iv) Members of the European program Safer Internet and Safer Internet Centers.
v) Members of International Association of Internet Hotlines (INHOPE) and the INSAFE Awareness raising network.
vi) National Law Enforcement Agencies fighting and preventing cybercrime, online child pornography and online child sexual abuse.
vii) European Law Enforcement Agencies fighting and preventing cybercrime, online child pornography and online sexual abuse.
viii) European and International platforms, information systems and networks for communication and exchange of cybercrime and online child exploitation related information and intelligence between members and authorized stakeholders.
ix) National and European Cybercrime centers of Excellence in Research, Training and Education.
The consortium consists of six complementary partners. It comprises of two research centers, KEMEA and CENTRIC, which are related directly to cyber security and cybercrime. Both centers also carry out theoretical research and training programmes to enhance LEAs skills and are in close collaboration with their National LEAs. An academic institution (UPRC), which has considerable expertise in information, computer, and network security. UPRC has also experience in the analysis of complex systems, as well as the design and development of network-centric systems, innovative services, and intelligent processing algorithms. A non-profit, non-Governmental independent organization active in programs with orientation in areas related to humans (CNTI) and partner of the Safer Internet Programme in Cyprus. CNTI is an experienced promoter of the safer Internet use, addressing not only the issues of child pornography, but also the inappropriate use of persons’ private data. Two European SMEs (ADITESS and MEZZA) with extensive experience in innovative software development, web solutions, Internet marketing, social media content analysis and knowledge management platforms.
The synthesis of the consortium, both geographically, but also in terms of skills, expertise and competencies, ensures that:
- Citizens’ requirements on reporting illegal and/or suspicious activities on the Internet, as well as LEA’s requirements on collecting, filtering, analyzing and correlating open source intelligence will be considered.
- Platform’s design and implementation will meet these requirements and allow for seamless and efficient exchange of information and cooperation between LEAs (National & EU), national alerting platforms, hotlines, Europol and European Cybercrime Center.
- Extensive dissemination network will be set up, including National hotlines and alerting platforms, National and EU LEAs, European cybercrime platforms, and cybercrime prevention and fighting research institutions.